Department of Health Care Organization and Policy

The MCH Policy & Leadership Program

Maternal and Child Health is the collaborative discipline within public health that uses the tools of all public health disciplines to focus on assuring conditions that allow children and families to be healthy and reach full potential.

Maternal and Child Health focuses on the determinants, mechanisms, policies, and systems that promote and maintain the health, safety, well-being and appropriate development of children and families in communities and societies.

Maternal and Child Health is not just for those who have or are interested in children today; MCH is also about assuring the health and well-being of tomorrow’s children and adults. After more than 75 years, MCH remains focused on the future.

“Sometimes when I get home at night in Washington, I feel as though I had been in a great traffic jam, the jam is moving toward the Hill where Congress sits in judgment on all the administrative agencies of the government. In that traffic jam there are all kinds of vehicles moving up toward the Capitol… There are all of the conveyances that the Army can put in the street… There are the hayricks and the binders and the ploughs and all the other things the Department of Agriculture manages to put into the streets… I stand on the sidewalk watching it become more and more congested and more difficult, and then because the responsibility is mine and I must, I take a very firm hold on the handles of the baby carriage and I wheel it into the traffic.”
-Grace Abbott, Children’s Bureau, 1935



Mission: To prepare present and future MCH leaders to promote, preserve, and enhance the health of children, families, and communities.

The goal of the MCH Policy & Leadership Program is to provide excellent education and preparation for public health professionals from diverse backgrounds for leadership roles in MCH. Our program focuses not only on core public health and MCH skills, with a unique focus on policy, but also on leadership training and advocacy.

MCH faculty is committed not only to excellence in teaching but also to excellence in research. In addition, the MCH Policy & Leadership Program, through its faculty and students, provides continuing education and technical assistance to our MCH practice partners, including state Title V and Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN) agencies in the Southeast, specifically Alabama, Mississippi, and Tennessee. More information about our continuing education work can be found on the South Central Public Health Partnership website. For more information, please contact Dr. Julie Preskitt.

The MCH Policy & Leadership Program prepares MPH and DrPH students for a variety of career paths in academia and in local, state, national, and international public health agencies and private health-related organizations. These career paths may include MCH program administration, policy and advocacy careers, and MCH international/global health careers, among others.

Recent MCH graduates have obtained employment in numerous settings domestically and internationally. These include state and county health departments across the country, non-profit health agencies, advocacy organizations, academic institutions, hospitals, health services organizations, and the Centers for Disease Control. Typical position titles include Program Coordinator, Project Coordinator, Program Manager, Research Assistant, Research and Evaluation Coordinator, Program Research Specialist, Epidemiologist, Data Manager, Public Health Specialist, Public Health Social Worker, Program Services Coordinator, Grants Manager, Program Analyst, Planning Associate, Planning Specialist, Policy Associate, Research Analyst, Prevention Specialist, and Assistant Professor.



Andrzej Kulczycki Ph.D.

Reproductive health; Behavior and policy; Demography and population studies; Maternal and early child health

Janet Bronstein, Ph.D.

Health care services for the low income population; The operation of safety net health care systems; Medicaid and S-CHIP programs; Physician Medicaid participation; Quality of care issues

W. Jack Duncan, Ph.D.

Management; Strategic Planning

Peter Ginter, Ph.D.

Strategic Management; Leadership

Lisa McCormick, Dr.P.H.

Public Health Preparedness and Training (liaison with South Central Public Health Training Center)

Nir Menachemi, Ph.D.

Health information technologies; Patient safety; Medical malpractice; Healthcare quality issues

Beverly Mulvihill M.ED., Ph.D.

Child Development; Children with and At-Risk for Disabilities; Early Intervention; Child Care Issues; Early Identification of Children in Need of Special Services; Community-based Early Intervention and Inclusion; Health Care Access Needs of Families and their Children

Mary Ann Pass M.D., M.P.H.

Public Health Practice, especially Maternal and Child Health Programs; Disease Control Programs; Women's Health; Community-based Primary Care/Systems Development; Perinatal Health, especially Perinatal Infections; Infant Mortality; Infant Death Reviews; Comparative Maternal and Child Health in Developing and Developed Countries; School Health

Julie Preskitt, M.P.H., Ph.D.

Children with Special Health Care Needs; Insurance

Andrew Rucks, Ph.D.

MCH Leadership; Finance; Public Health Preparedness

Bisakha (Pia) Sen Ph.D.

Delinquent behavior and substance use among adolescents; Adolescent fertility outcomes; Child health outcomes including obesity

Martha Wingate Dr.P.H.

Perinatal health with specific interests in racial and ethnic disparities; Fetal and infant mortality; Preterm birth; Health policies related to pregnancy and infant health

  • The goal of the Alabama MCH Leadership Network, a group of Maternal and Child Health Bureau funded Leadership Training Programs in Alabama, is to provide interdisciplinary MCH leadership education to trainees and fellows, continuing education to MCH providers, and advocacy through partnerships with the MCH community.

    For more information on the Alabama MCH Leadership Network amd its activities, please visit
  • Maternal and Child Health Faculty and Students can be funded to attended Conferences and Seminars such as...
    • MCH EPI Seminar
    • APHA
    • AMCHP
    • MCH Leadership Retreat
  • As part of the MPH degree, students are required to complete an internship; internship/fellowship opportunities can be found at

    Some Internship placements from previous students include...
    • University of Alabama at Birmingham
    • Autism Society of Alabama
    • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    • Children's of Alabama
    • Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) in the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA)
    • UNICEF and Family Health International
    • 1917 Clinic
    • Jefferson County Department of Health
    • United Way
    • Sarrell Dental Center
    • March of Dimes
    • Peace Corps
    • American Heart Association



  • President: Carrie Buntain
  • Vice President: Honour McDaniel
  • Secretary: Madeline Pratt
  • Treasurer: Jessi Kornegay Lee
  • MCH SAGE Leaders:
    • Eniola Ajayi
    • Abreah Ash
    • Angela Bunt
    • Emily Burch
    • Nick Cataldo
    • Michele Damitio
    • Anushree Gade
    • Liza Kimbo
    • Jillian Ligon
    • Margarita Luedtke
    • Courtney Marlow
    • Matthew Moore
    • Teresa Morescalchi
    • Jessica Morgan
    • Zoha Nizami
    • Benjamin Ngumbi
    • Hadiyah Page
    • Damaris Reid
    • Lindsey Rice
    • Anissa Sanders
    • Drashti Shah
    • Mashal Talat
    • Kerri Tang
    • Elizabeth Tryon-Ebert
  • Advisor: Julie McDougal
Sharing MCH Knowledge & Experience


To enrich & enhance our MCH education

To forge meaningful & lasting relationships

between students, staff & faculty


To promote MCH

within our University & throughout our community


To facilitate student interaction, involvement & 

leadership development



Participate in monthly meetings & help plan/produce events

Participate in community service activities like the Birmingham Mayor's Office's "Take A Child To The Doctor Day" & Pathways Toiletries Drives

Attend MCH SAGE Seminars

Participate in fund raising events, like the Halloween & Valentine's Sales

Participate in MCH SAGE social events

Although MCH SAGE started as an organization for MCH graduate students in the School of Public Health, it has grown to incorporate graduate & undergraduate students from not only various departments within the School of Public Health but also various schools & departments across the University. ALL with an interest in MCH are welcome, whether here on campus or online!

MCH SAGE offers mentorship to new MCH graduate students. New students are paired with current students for mentoring, especially during that critical 1st semester. MCH SAGE mentors assist MCH students with their transition to & connection with academic life.


You can also visit our Engage page
contact Julie McDougal for more information!




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